2010-12-31 / Front Page

After Sexual Relationship Ends, Teacher Sues AP

By Howard Schwach
Ayoung teacher is suing her former assistant principal and Department of Education officials, claiming that she got the boot from her Far Rockaway school after complaining that she was harassed by her assistant principal, who allegedly sent her offensive e-mails, humiliated her with Facebook postings and sent threats that caused her to “fear for my life” after they broke up.

Karien Pichardo Karien Pichardo Karien Pichardo, 32, claims that she was fired just before she was due to get tenure at PS 253 in Far Rockaway after her romance with Assistant Principal Fred Iorio, 50, went south.

Department of Education officials say that Iorio remains in his $104,000-a-year job after admitting he bedded the rookie even though he was her supervisor.

“It’s shocking and unfair that he could do all this, and he’s the one who was protected,” she said in her court papers.

A spokesperson for the DOE says it has no policy against romantic relationships between employees.

Pichardo is suing Iorio as well as school officials, including outgoing Chancellor Joel Klein, in Manhattan Supreme Court, contending her complaints were swept under the rug.

Her lawyer, Marshall Bellovin, told New York Post reporters that school investigators “whitewashed” Iorio’s conduct.

Court papers say that after Pichardo – who is seeking unspecified damages – broke off their six-month affair, Iorio allegedly bombarded her with love poems and notes begging her to take him back.

In a furious rant on Facebook, the assistant principal allegedly wrote: “I put myself out there and got creamed emotionally and financially for it. Most of the clothes, shoes, housewares, mascara and perfumes she has I purchased for her,” the suit says.

Pichardo said she found photos of Iorio, his relatives and his dog tucked into her tote bag and desk.

Iorio, according to her suit, also sent a terrifying e-mail that read: “REMEMBER, SOME PEOPLE ARE ALIVE SIMPLY BECAUSE IT IS ILLEGAL TO SHOOT THEM.”

Iorio denied making any threats. He told Post reporters that Pichardo, who was recently divorced, seduced him.

He said he was reprimanded only for “poor judgment” in dating the teacher and for demanding she pay $1,100 to refund his gifts.

The Department of Education declined requests from The Wave for comment.

Pichardo, rated satisfactory her first two years, was fired for excessive absences.

She says the harassment made her sick with a diagnosed stress disorder.

Return to top


Email Us
Contact Us

Copyright 1999 - 2014 Wave Publishing Co. All Rights Reserved

Neighborhoods | History